So you’ve been training for a while and have decided to test yourself in the fires of competition. You’re going to go through a emotional roller coaster of highs and lows in the lead up and on the actual day, but here are some tips to make sure you are the one with the hand raised when that bell rings.
1. Train like your life depended on it
There are so many uncontrollable variables when it comes to competing. One that you can control is your own fitness and training. Make sure you are getting into the gym on a regular basis doing classes, bag work, pad rounds, sparring, clinch and conditioning. Different things motivate different people but your will to win should surpass your will to give up. Run that extra kilometer, or do that extra round on the pads because if you aren’t your opponent definitely will be.
2. Listen to your trainers
You may not realize this but your trainer has been with you since the start of the journey. They are there at every class teaching, motivating and working with you. They know your ins and outs, strengths and weaknesses and are a wealth of knowledge when it comes to the fight game. Always listen to there advice before, during and even after the bout. Tune out from the mindless cheer-leading “punches in bunches” from the crowd, and listen out for the valuable advice from your trainers during the bout.
3. Get a good nights rest before game day
Go to bed early the night before. If it’s your first fight then thoughts will race through your mind but its important to quieten down these thoughts and get some much needed rest the night before. You want to feel fresh and energetic in the morning. If you had to cut some weight, make sure you eat healthy even right before the bout. Don’t go out fueling your body with junk food the morning before the day of your big fight!
4. Stay calm and focused
So many different thoughts will race in and out of your mind in the lead up and especially on the morning and day of the fight. Studies have proven that negative self talk and doubt can affect your performance on game day. Stay positive and remind yourself that you have prepared well and are ready for this. When that bell rings and you touch gloves, remember to remain calm and focused even if your opponent charges at you like a angry bull. Be confident in your skill and ability and stay focused!
5. Do your best
At the end of the day it’s just a inter club. Don’t get too caught up with what might or might not happen. Remember why you started the sport of Muay Thai? It’s because you loved it. Go out there and do your best. Win, lose, or draw at least you know you gave it your all. Leave it all in the ring with no regrets.
Written by Phillip Lai (Owner and Head Muay Thai Coach at Team Nemesis Martial Arts)